Alex Tabarok just lately mentioned an article that criticizes philosophers for dwelling on the previous:
Hanno Sauer explains why philosophers spend far an excessive amount of time studying and writing about useless philosophers:
Paradoxically, this message appeared instantly after a Put up of Tyler Cowen suggesting that the amount principle of cash remains to be vital. Virtually all the greatest work on the QTM is written by deceased economists.
I am not educated about philosophy, however one of many greatest issues with PhD applications in economics is that the educating focuses closely on latest work and too little consideration is given to macroeconomists who’ve made their work 100 years in the past. College students work with a restricted set of fashions, which regularly replicate a novel strategy to macroeconomics. Thus, in latest a long time, the price of renting cash strategy (centered on rates of interest) has discarded the value of cash strategy and the cash amount strategy. Sure, each of those various approaches have issues, however so does the rate of interest strategy. Extra importantly, in addition they include data that helps us higher perceive the world, data that may be missed by those that focus solely on curiosity rate-driven fashions.
For my part, a graduate program in macro ought to spend 1/3 of the time educating the historical past of financial thought, 1/3 of the time educating macroeconomic historical past (i.e. knowledge historic) and 1/3 of the time educating fashionable fashions. of macros. Maybe if that they had finished so over the previous few a long time, then economists would have realized a lot sooner that tight financial coverage by the Fed was driving the US economic system into recession on the finish of 2008.
I’ve a e book popping out this yr (tentatively titled Various approaches to financial economics), which tries to unravel this drawback. For my part, it is not potential to actually perceive a subject like macro except you see it from a number of angles. Sadly, the knowledge of macroeconomists like Irving Fisher, Ralph Hawtrey and George Warren has been largely forgotten. Even Friedman’s concepts of Milton fade into the previous.
Right here is Irving Fisher and his son: